The Mono Project on Feb. 20 announced that it has developed a Visual Basic compiler that will enable software developers who use Microsoft Visual Basic to run their applications on any platform that supports Mono, such as Linux, without any code modifications.
Though often disparaged by developers, Visual Basic remains one of the worlds most commonly used programming languages.
According to Forrester Research, 37 percent of enterprises use Microsoft Visual Basic.Net for development and maintenance of their in-house applications.
Whats more, among .Net developers, 59 percent use Visual Basic.Net as their only programming language.
Thus, as of 2006, at least 20 percent of all in-house business programs were still being written in Basic, according to the market analysis firm.
Until now, Visual Basic applications could only run on Windows OSes, without major modifications.
With the Mono Visual Basic compiler, however, those applications will be able to run on many more platforms.
As a proof point of this new platform-independence, the new compiler is self-hosting. That is, the complier itself is written in Visual Basic.